Webvisions 2006

I’ve returned from Portland, successfully capping off the little Summer Tour. It feels really good to be back, save for the immediate dive into a pile of work. I had a great time at Webvisions — my first time attending the conference (and the state of Oregon).

It was a fun event, and one that feels more intimate despite the full schedule over several tracks. I left feeling like I missed a lot in terms of the panels and presentations, but am looking forward to the podcasts.

My own presentation went well, I think. It was early on Day 2 (8:30am), but the turnout was excellent, and I felt _slightly_ more relaxed this time around. For those that attended, the Bulletproof Web Design slides are available (18MB PDF). They are slightly cryptic without the commentary, but possibly interesting if you’re feeling adventurous. Thanks to those that came out and listened.

The Design Panel (the actual title, which I love) went well, too, in lieu of myself being a bit drained after the morning’s session. There was a great turnout, many of whom brought interesting questions. For instance, after talking about the importance of good copy (a rareity) as interface design, one attendee pimped her own copywriting business (multiple times). Now normally this would be bad practice — but she managed to pull it off humorously. Bryan Veloso did a bang-up job as moderator (excellent meeting him for the first time) and Mike and Keith were spot on.

As with any post-conference rambling, you’ll often hear that the social aspect is just as (or more) important than the program. Very true for Webvisions as well, where it was fun to meet many folks that I hadn’t met before. And it being a smaller conference, that gave way for more time to chat in-depth on things.

Non-Webvisions highlights of visiting Portland included:

* The amazing Japanese Garden (with a free bonus view of the city and Mt. Hood). I was really blown away by it, and the location way up in a rolling hill above the city gave more of a hint at Oregon’s landscape.
* Stumptown Coffee. I had the best mocha I’ve ever tasted here, complete with marked foam.
* The Doug Fir Lounge. Like a pancake house that was turned ultra-hip and cool by the use of giant fir logs, fur-lined walls and crystal moose heads.
* Greek Cuisina. This is where the wrap-up party was, and I’ll let the photographic (and probably videographic) evidence speak for itself. Crazy place.
More photos of Portland (and mostly the Japanese Garden) are over at my Flickr stream. Thanks to Brad Smith and Nick Finck for the invite — they and the rest of the team put on a great show.


  1. Nate K says:

    Well, I did just read your book – so your slides made sense (except maybe for the occasional baby picture -hehe). I wish I could have been there in person – looks like a great time was had by many.

  2. Kevin says:

    Mmm… Stunmp Town. Of course I’ve only drunk coffee from beans roasted there. You’ll have to come up to Seattle and I’ll take you to Vivace for one of their mocha’s. Oh so tasty.
    Oh and the slides are prety funny without the commentary. Love the shot of the little guy.

  3. Joshua says:

    It was good to meet you and see you speak. The panel was great as well, except for maybe Keith’s lubrication comment. The copywrite girl was great as well.
    I was bummed I didn’t have the chance to sit down with you more, but I’m sure I’ll be seeing you around.
    And if anyone doesn’t believe how tired you were during the panel, here’s some proof.

  4. Kate Verburg says:

    I excel at making bad business practices work well. All part of marketing, baby.
    - The Copywrite Girl

  5. Marc says:

    One of these great conferences I keep reading about really needs to come to Boston someday. This way, I’ll finally be able to attend and meet some of the people I keep reading about.
    Great photos Dan!

  6. Zee says:

    Hey Dan – I attended your Bulletproof Design session and I really enjoyed it. As a newbie web designer (just look at my crappy blog design… heh! :) I took away a ton – lots to think about in terms of making things usable and expandable and finding different ways to solve problems. Almost overwhelming but intriguing and cool too! Woo! I also bought the book and I’m looking forward to digging into that as soon as I find a spare weekend.
    I’m glad too that you enjoyed Portland. It’s a great place to live. (But sssh, don’t tell anyone! :)

  7. Luckily, I saw WebVisions after my Woburn, MA-based company basically said “quick, I think there’s room in the budget… find a conference.” It was my first time at WebVisions and Dan and all the rest made it a memorable one. Between the great tracks and the absolute inexpensive price of the conference… really can’t be beat.
    That and… Dan Cederholm was there. ;) Just had to fly over there to talk some Dave Roberts.
    So, it’s time for my shameless plug… actually, trying to be helpful. I took some notes on Dan’s talk, so maybe following along with the slides will work well? Other WebVisions notes here as well. Give it a shot…
    Thanks again Dan! They were a great couple of sessions and both the books have been great in helping me in this “reinventing” phase.

  8. Angie says:

    I was one of the unfortunate souls that actually didn’t attend WebVisions (and I’m not exactly happy about it). Oh well…
    In any case… StumpTown? Yes! Best coffee/chai in Portland, hands down. But Greek Cuisina?? That place has been inspected by the health department more times than… well, use your imagination.
    Glad you enjoyed our beautiful city though! :) (But like Zee said – don’t tell anyone.)

  9. Rocketeer says:

    Damn, what a pity I couldn’t attend, I live in SAfrica (at the bottom of Africa)!

  10. Ryan Miglavs says:

    Glad you enjoyed Portland, Dan! It really is a beautiful city.
    And StumpTown is a beautiful coffee shop. One of many here. Glad you visited that and the Doug Fir Lounge. Two places that show some of the hip quirkiness of Portland.
    I was sad not to be able to attend WebVisions. My other business (*ahem* magician) took me elsewhere. Sounds like it was a brilliant event. Fortunately I have your truly lovely book to keep me satisfied. Perhaps I will also get the pleasure of meeting you at some point as well.

  11. flywolf says:

    It was a fun event.

  12. Damn, I wish I would have known about Stumptown coffee. I didn’t end up making it to the Japanese Garden either, so thanks for all the pictures.
    It was an absolute pleasure meeting you, Dan. Thanks for the unrivaled dinner conversation. I hope we see each other again very soon.
    P.S. Don’t forget to keep an eye out for Henry Weinhard’s root beer ;)

  13. David Mohrman says:

    Hey Dan,
    Thanks for signing my copies of your books! I had to toss a coin because Mike Davidson’s presentation was at the same time as yours Friday morning and his won. But I figured I’d catch you at the panel later in the day and at the book signing, and of course I’d could always check out your slides online.
    However, is “Wort-case scenarios” (slides 3 & 4) part of the “Cryptic” reference in you post, or just a typo no one caught yet, or a joke I missed by not attending your presentation or some kind of Cork’d thing? ;^J
    Anyway, it was great to meet you and as good as Mike’s presentation was, I wish I’d gone to your’s instead.
    Next year, then.

  14. I was just going to attempt to respond to each comment, but then realized I fell too far behind…
    Was a pleasure to meet you Joshua, Adam, Matthew and David. And thanks again to those who checked out the presentation or had a book signed. I’d highly recommend Webvisions 2007, as I’m sure it’ll continue to get even better (and perhaps it’ll be < 100°F).

  15. Brian says:

    I’m sure I’ve seen that favicon somewhere before..

  16. Harold says:

    Thanks for the slides, Dan. Any chance we will see your panel on this podcast list?

  17. Matt says:

    It was a fun event.

  18. How on earth did I not meet you? I was spending most of the trip with Dan Rubin… and check out these photos:
    Your photo:
    My Photo:
    We must have been a few feet away from each other. :|
    Anyway, glad you had a good time.

  19. I am glad to see you back, continuing with your notebook. I like your words.

  20. Another fabulous year of WebVisions is history and what an event it was…aside from a few hitches such as neglecting to include descriptions for the sessions and panels and occasionally maxing out our WiFi access, it was a great show.